Fragrant Garden

Shishir's interest in the study and cultivation of fragrant plants led to collecting, and growing fragrant plants of all kinds. From that study and experience in growing fragrant plants he distilled several design principles that can be used to organize the garden:

  1. Plan for sequential bloom so something is blooming throughout the season and not too many things at once

  2. Plant some of the low growing fragrant herbs as ground cover around stepping stones or in pots
  3. Place fragrant plants under windows or at the entrance so their scent can be enjoyed from the house
  4. Locate fragrant plants surrounding a bench or garden swing so you can relax and enjoy them
  5. Cover all available walls with fragrant vines so that the scent surrounds you
  6. Consider raised planters, containers so that those plants that hold their scent closely can be reached without bending over so far
  7. Consider prevailing winds when planting. The scent will obviously be stronger downwind

Following is a list of some of the best plants grown for their fragrance. Be advised that this list contains a number of somewhat tender plants, and a few suited only to cold climatic conditions. An effort was made to provide variety within each category, therefore not every plant is necessarily the most fragrant of its kind/color.

PLANTS FOR THE FRAGRANT GARDEN

Here's a look at some super-fragrant options for the garden:

Chocolate Flower (Berlandiera lyrata): This native wildflower produces dark-eyed, yellow daisies that exude a rich, chocolate aroma in the morning. Best with minimal water once established. Can reseed. Perennial.

Sunset Hyssop (Agastache rupestris): Bold brushes of sunset orange flowers from August to frost. Native to high mountains of the Southwest, the whole plant exudes a rich, root-beer aroma. An exotic contribution to water-smart gardens or perennial borders.

Lavender (Lavandula): These fragrant European plants of the mint family have spikes of pale-purplish flowers and yield a distinct aroma and aromatic oil.

Sea Foam Artemisia (Aremisia versicolor): This vigorous, attractive groundcover has lacy, mounding foliage of silvery blue and smells wonderful when rubbed up against. Clump-forming and noninvasive. Perennial.

Night-Scented Stock (Matthiola bicornis): Deliciously scented flowers which open in the evening. Ideal for window boxes.

Carol Mackie Daphne (Daphne x burkwoodii): This trim shrub has whorls of nearly evergreen, cream-edged foliage. It produces a heavy display of very fragrant, pale pink flowers in spring, and often again in the fall. It is adaptable and quick-growing.

Angel Trumpet (Brugmansia): Exotic shrubs which blossom with large, sweet-smelling, trumpetlike flowers

Types of Fragrant Climbing Plants -From: DK Books - Arches

Flowers pack double the effect when they not only look but also smell beautiful. Discover which climbing plants will work best for your arch or pergola.

When choosing climbers to decorate arches and pergolas, fragrance is, for many people, the overriding criterion. Enduring images of rose-covered arbors, pergolas dripping with headily scented wisteria, or arches clothed in sweet-smelling honeysuckle are very appealing. There are others aside from these three classics, and not all of them require sunny conditions to do well.

Some Scented Favorites

Jasmine — especially Jasmine officinale f. affine, with pink flowers flushed white — is among the best pergola climbers for both fragrance and visual appeal. A twisting semi-evergreen, it gives a dense cover in sun and produces a strong, heady scent through summer. Clematis flammula is a vigorous, herbaceous clematis that needs cutting down every winter; however bare it is in the early months, the almond-scented white flowers in late summer and early autumn more than compensate. The chocolate vine, Akebia quinata, is an interesting, semi-evergreen, twining climber best in sun. Vanilla-scented reddish purple flowers appear in late spring and ripen to purple, sausage-shaped fruits.

Fragrant Climbing Roses

Roses in all forms are often chosen for their perfume. Happily, there is a huge selection of fragrant climbing roses, suitable for training over pergolas and arches. Particularly fine examples are Rosa 'Wedding Day' (extremely vigorous rambling rose with masses of repeat-flowering, creamy white blooms), R. 'New Dawn' (less vigorous, with strongly scented pale pink flowers), and R. 'Madame Alfred Carrière' (even paler pink, and suitable for shady areas).

More Fragrant Plants to Consider:

Actinidia kolomikta Twisting, with variegated leaves and small white summer flowers.
Clematis armandii (almond-scented) and C. montana 'Elizabeth' (vanilla-scented).
Lonicera Many, in particular L. x americana, L. x brownii 'Dropmore Scarlet', L. japonica 'Halliana', and L. periclymenum 'Serotina'.
Rosa Many, including R. 'Albertine', R. 'Compassion', R. 'Gloire de Dijon', and R. 'Zéphirine Drouhin' (thornless).
Trachelospermum jasminoides Creamy white, fragrant flowers in summer.
Wisteria Many, including W. x formosa and W. sinensis